Recipe: English Flapjacks

English flapjacks are an oat bar made with golden syrup, not a pancake. We found Tate and Lyle’s Golden Syrup in the grocery store this month (Dierbergs in Creve Coeur, with the other syrups), and set about making proper English flapjacks. It took four batches to get this recipe right.

If you cannot find golden syrup, this page has some ideas of alternatives.

English Flapjacks.


  • 6 oz (1½ sticks) unsalted butter or margarine
  • 6 oz (almost 1½ cups) dark brown sugar
  • 4 tablespoons Tate and Lyle’s Golden Syrup (available in some US grocery stores, can use 3tbsp golden syrup and 1tbsp dark molasses if you want)
  • 10 oz (3¼ cups) quick oats (cheap thin oats work best for flapjacks)
  • 1 teaspoon of sea salt
  • (optional: 3oz of raisins, dates, dried cherries, walnuts, pumpkin seeds, hazelnuts, etc. Chocolate chips will not work, they will melt too fast)

Set the oven for 350F. Melt the margarine, add the golden syrup, salt, and sugar, and mix well until the sugar is melted. Remove from the heat and stir in the oats, making sure all of them are covered. It will look like you have too many oats, just keep stirring until all of them are coated.

Grease an 8 inch square Pyrex dish with cooking spray, add the mixture and squish down with a spatula. Bake for 20 minutes only, even though it won’t look cooked by the end. Leave in the dish to cool and solidify, loosening the edges with a knife, then turn out and slice into squares while still slightly warm. Store in an airtight container.

This makes sixteen squares about two inches across, or eight bars. Ours didn’t last long.


  1. I’ve read of the mysterious golden syrup before…and I admit these sound very, very tasty. Perhaps I’ll have to investigate!

  2. I was a little confused in Antigua to be offered flapjacks with bacon and eggs as a breakfast option. Equally baffled but relieved when they turned out to be more like British pancakes, I’m not sure what I think of as flapjack goes with bacon.

  3. I made these this weekend for my boyfriend to take on his spring fishing trip with his friends. Mine came out very crispy on the edge pieces but more chewy in the center. Very good though – and I waited a little too long to cut them so WOW was that part tough!

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